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Ghost Stories - Cigar City Brewing

Not Rated.
Ghost StoriesGhost Stories

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

26 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 26
Hads: 225
Avg: 3.81
pDev: 43.04%
Wants: 44
Gots: 37 | FT: 4
Brewed by:
Cigar City Brewing visit their website
Florida, United States

Style | ABV
Braggot |  10.00% ABV

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 01-11-2013

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 26 | Hads: 225
Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.12/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Thanks to vacax for sharing this one at GRG1313’s tasting.

Pours an almost opaque super dark brown with a foamy dark khaki head that fades to nothing. Small streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of toasted malt, marshmallow, cocoa, and coconut aromas. Taste is much the same with smoke flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of roasty bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is very good beer with some interesting aromas and flavors.

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Photo of Knapp85
3.8/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This poured out as a dark brown brew, almost black. There is a tan creamy head on top with a pretty impressive retention and lacing here. The smell is earthy, I pick up elements of evergreen, pine and then there is a sweetness on the nose and I believe the tea comes out along with the coconut a little bit. The taste of the beer is oaky, slightly chocolatey with a toasty malt flavor, there is a subtle amount of honey that comes through but not enough for a Braggot. The mouthfeel is creamy, soft carbonation. Overall this beer is unique. It's not really a Braggot in my opinion but still worth trying.

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Photo of Rifugium
4.15/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

First had: on tap at Hawthornes, Philly, PA

Dark brown-black pour, opaque, topped with a foamy tan head that retained as a collar and left some lacing on the glass. Aroma of dark malts and dark chocolate, slightly herbal and vegetal with an unusual scent reminiscent of green beans; somewhat boozy. Taste of cocoa and cream, caramel malts, nutshells, roasted marshmallow, branching out into a full-blown liquid macaroon. The booze actually came out a bit more as it warmed. Smooth mouthfeel, on the heavier side of medium-bodied. Quite enjoyable overall.

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Photo of MasterSki
3.65/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Sean for bringing this to my post-dissertation defense party. Served in a tulip.

A - Tan foam settles to a thin cap, thick collar, and minimal lace. Dark brown body.

S - Odd mix of tea, oak, and cocoa. There's some vegetal pepper notes, even though I don't think that's one of the adjunct; guessing it's black smoked tea?

T - The taste is again an odd mix of cocoa, vanilla, tea, and oak. Some cocoa and nuts, as well as an unexpected note of cinnamon and some odd vegetal flavors.

M - Smooth, medium-full body, with lower carbonation, and well-hidden booze. No complaints here.

D - Unlike the Kuhnhenn braggots I've had, the typical mead sweetness is quite understated here. More beer, but largely dominated by adjuncts. A bit busy, and not really my cup of tea. Disappointing considering the players involved. Might be willing to try this again in a more controlled setting where I can ponder this more thoroughly, but not something I'd seek out again.

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Photo of chinchill
3.63/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Shared large bottle.
Camp Braggot Ghost Stories
Large shared bottle.
Rich flavor and aroma with a very full body.
Higher ABV evident.
A bit sweet until the end of the finish.
Smooth body but with some heat (alcohol).

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Photo of Lare453
4.17/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle into a dfh glass

A black with a thick dense foamy tan head. Lots, no, tons of lacing.

S peanut butter, peanut powder, vanilla, marshmallow, chocolate.

T heavy peanut powder beginning, the middle has a sweet vanilla and marshmallow middle, the end has a chocolate covered peanut end. The aftertaste is too short for such a delicious beer, but it has a vanilla, sweet caramel and peanut end.

M thick, rich, creamy, smooth carbonation

O amazing. Another hit from ccb. Highly recommended.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
3.41/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750 mL bottle poured into a snifter.

Appearance - Almost black. Nice khaki head. Lasts forever. Leggy as I swirl it.

Smell - Kinda nondescript malt and honey aroma. A little boozy. Some roast.

Taste - Much better. Much more roast and honey. It is a bit campfireish. Some tea, but it's a little odd and astringent. Very sweet.

Mouthfeel - Thick and chewy. Finish drops off quickly. Heavy and sweet.

Overall - It's tasty, but strange. I kinda like it. Couldn't drink a lot of it.

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Photo of cjgator3
1.93/5  rDev -49.3%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2

Enjoyed a bottle of this at a recent bottle share. Glad I got to try this in a small sample because it is not my thing. Dark tea leaves and honey dominate the aroma and taste but just did not work for me with this beer.

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Photo of spinrsx
3.82/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Sampled at the Brew Pub - Tampa FL

Appearance - Slightly hazy brown colour with an average size fizzy beige coloured head. There is a low amount of carbonation showing and there is some great lacing. The head lasted for 3-4 minutes.

Smell - Chocolate, malts, honey

Taste & Mouth - There is a below average amount of carbonation and I can taste caramel mixed with malts and some honey. There is also some nice chocolate flavours and some raisins and an earthiness. It ends with a semi-sweet chocolatey aftertaste.

Overall - A really good beer that I'd be happy to drink again anytime. The brewery has some of this set aside in barrels being aged.. I'm sure the result will be amazing.

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Photo of xnicknj
3.99/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

on tap at hawthornes, served in large Duvel tulip - part of the EBF kegs that came to Philly after the blizzard fiasco

Deep, blacked out pour with a super frothy tanned head resting on top. Retains throughout most of the pour with webbed, sticky lacing coating the glass while drinking.

Complex, interesting nose with dark roasted malts, honey, coconut, chocolate and alcohol. A touch of minty tea and sweetness with brownies and glowing warmth.

Sweet and warm up front with swirling chocolate and honey. Slightly minty tea note comes through, followed by a thick, roasted malt backbone. Touches of cocoa, vanilla and coconut along with more honey and a slightly boozy finish.

Full body, decent carbonation, sticky and lasting on the tongue. I really enjoy hybrid styles so I was pretty psyched to try this one - I probably couldn't do more than a smaller pour, but I hope to see more Braggots from other breweries in the future.

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Photo of thagr81us
3.78/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Big thanks goes out to 67couple for sharing this one at a recent Random Sunday Tasting! Served from bottle into a Mikkeller flute. Poured a massively dark brown with a minimal off-white head. Maintained excellent lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, wood, honey, tea, fruit, and coconut. The flavor was of sweet malt, coconut, wood, earth, honey, coconut, dark chocolate, fruit, spice, and tea. It had a light feel on the palate with medium-high carbonation. Overall this was a pretty decent brew. As far as braggots go this one wasn't too bad. All of the components that were added to this one definitely did a nice job of incorporating themselves into the brew with their own unique twist. This made it quite interesting to the palate to drink and fairly enjoyable. Glad I got the chance to try this one after I had heard good things about it.

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Photo of maximum12
3.72/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to the ever-generous CaptCleveland for this bottle, pretty sure it was an extra, 'cause that's how the old bastard rolls. Big 750ML bomber split with my wife.

Pour is close to dead-of-night black with a furry brown cap. Pick it up & stick my nose in it, & there's plenty of notes to note. Plenty of chocolate, fresh leather coat, honeyed sweetness, roast weaves in & out without much conviction. Nice, & odd.

Ghost Stories is the odd duck at the Odd Duck Annual Convention; had to finally look up the ingredients to figure out what I was drinking. Sweet dabs of honey hold the high ground & grows in strength as the beer warms. The leather notes that might be the oak buttresses the honey. Touches of roast, chocolate, earthy must. Some weird taste that I can't identify might be the tea, but the honey is king here. My sweet tooth begs for more, nice & easy to put away.

Ultimately this is a good braggot, but the adjuncts might be detracting rather than adding to the experience. A worthy experiment.

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Photo of Dave_Treat
3.96/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Very interesting. Had held up very well. Dark pour small tan head. The honey and tea are very present in the smell and taste. Very sweet. Vanilla is added in the taste. No smokey taste others have reported.

Really enjoyed this. Goes very well after the camping trip I just came off where we sat around the camp fire telling... ghost stories!

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Photo of flexabull
3.48/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bottle courtesy of johnyb, thanks again!

Pours a dark brown color with a nice rocky tan head. Kind of surprised when I poured it, was expecting a more lighter gold color.

Aromas are of cocoa, earthiness, and light cedar.

Taste is certainly unique. Light nuttiness, sweet honey, cola, crisp and clean with a mineral like bite on the finish.

Mouthfeel is crisp and dry, light body.

Overall? Definitely an odd duck. Well worth trying, but dang getting through this whole bottle is going to take some time.

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Photo of PorterLambic
4.29/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Arrives as black as a moonless night. A dark tan, creamy head, half an inch thick, rest loving on top. Retention is weak, dropping to a thickish ring fairly quickly.
Smell is rich with notes of roasted malt, coffee, dark chocolate fudge, a brown sugarlike sweetness and maybe some light raisins. Balance is good.
Taste is sweet, rich, full of chocolate fudge, roasted malt, light coffee with a whiff of toffee, whiskey and some indeterminate dark fruit. Again, well balanced.
Very smooth, full bodied, rich and warming. A great collaboration and a great brew.
Get it while you can.

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Photo of macrosmatic
3.98/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes. Had on-tap at CCB tasting room. Served in a snifter.

A: Dark, essentially black, opaque, with a thin tan head that fades quickly. Essentially no visible carbonation.

S: Roasty, burnt chocolate, undertones of sweet sugar and tobacco and smoke.

T: Follows the nose. Roasty, chocolate, sweet malts with tobacco dryness. Perhaps it's the power of suggestion but there are indeed marshmallow flavors here if I look for them.

M: ABV well-hidden here. A somewhat creamy mouthfeel (from honey? lactose?), and sticky. Fairly heavy body with low carbonation sensation.

O: This was interesting, but overall sweeter than I would prefer. I felt done with this one before the snifter was empty. Certainly not your run-of-the-mill beverage.

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Photo of Docrock
4.3/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

750ml bottle poured into a Barrelworks Teku.

A: pours a smoky dark smooth chocolate color with a nice 1/2" mocha head. Decent lacing but the head diminished quickly. Have sat on this one for quite awhile due to early comments about it being too sweet.

S: like nothing I have smelled before, definitely a nice medium dark chocolate, touch of vanilla, a bit of tea?, and a touch of smokiness.

T: everything that was on the nose was present with a burnt chocolate aftertaste. Very complex and like nothing I have had before.

M: smooth and velvety. Carbonation was a little low but with the aging was not surprised.

O: wow, a very interesting brew. I really enjoyed it and as above like nothing I have had before. Smooth and not overpowering on the sweetness. Might be tough to drink a whole bottle but was fortunate enough to be able to share this one.

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Photo of cnbrown313
4.28/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 750ml bottle into a Cigar City snifter

A - Dark, yet somewhat translucent brownish / black, with a nice 2 finger khaki head

S - Sweet smelling, with a definite hint of tea. Chamomile? Or something similar

T - Wow! The only way I could describe this is, that there's a lot going on... In a good way. Sweet up front (you can taste honey), then smooth and chocolatey as you sip, followed by a little bit of alcohol and that tea flavor. Very complex.

M - Medium bodied, smooth and creamy

O - I didn't know what to expect from this beer, and ended up loving it. Recommended. One of the most complex beers I've had...

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Photo of WTKeene
4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from an undated bottle extra'd by jp11801 into a Jester King wine glass. My first braggot!

Appearance: Deep, dark ebony with hints of red/brown coming through the light. A rather persistent the color of beechwood that fades into a thick creamy crown and leaves thick lacing too.

Smell: Smells dark, with a lot of clover honey notes over an oaky, herbal base. Vanilla and tea mesh together with the honey, hints of chocolate play in the background. Really unique compared to other beers I've had, but probably par for the course among braggots.

Taste: Honey, something vaguely vinous too. Rather boozy, light cocoa too. A slight hint of coconut perhaps? A hint of smoke, oak, and a bit of ashen tea too, maybe Earl Grey? Definitely something English. No bitterness that I can detect. Very unique. Reminds me of something between a stout and a barleywine, with a lot of honey added.

Mouthfeel: Sticky, with flavors of tea lingering quite a while. The body of the beer is on the thinner side, and the carbonation is higher than I'd like.

Overall: Definitely an interesting beer. Glad I got to try a braggot, but I'm not sure I'll be rushing back to try more any time soon. Wouldn't mind trying other takes on the style though, they could be very unique I'm sure.

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Photo of yamar68
4.08/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Huge thanks to liquiddegenerate for sending this surprise bottle!

Black coffee body; a murky edge of clarity. Looks boozy... large gauge carbonation on top forming a thin but stubborn cap that makes a great deal of oily lace.

Lots of stuff going on with the nose. There's mild fudge, pretty obvious coconut presence, fermented honey, some earthy kind of spice thing going on (something to do with the tea addition?), the oak is pretty hard to pinpoint so far.

Tastes a little bit like a s'more (or maybe I've just been looking at the label too long...) - chocolate, coconut, marshmallow, black tea, maybe some nutmeg or something going on, some roasty malts. Doesn't taste like any other beer I can think of, that's for sure. I like it.

Complex, a little sweet, a little smokey, a lotta awesome. Thanks Jim!

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Photo of kels
4.23/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another great thanks to Carly for getting to try this one.

Pours a dark brown with suggestions of ruby red in the edges of the cocoa-powder brown head. The head starts at a finger of tightly-bound fizz that fades to a well-retained skim that pushes up the sides of the wall and leaves sticky, short-lived rings of lace.

The nose is a sweet, roasty blend of grain and perfume. Honestly, the sweetness of the honey and earthiness of the tea results in a mellow, perfume-like fragrance that is unlike anything I've smelled in a beer before. A little whiff of the alcohol and a little toffee-like note in the finish, especially as the beer continues to warm.

Taste is complex. Hard to figure out, but easy to enjoy. The roast, coffee-like, is equally contended by a clear honey and slight chocolate-covered berry fruitiness. Coconut has to be deciphered - not readily found, and comes across like toasted marshmallow in the aftertaste. The carbonation lifts the feel just enough to keep it from sitting too heavy on the tongue, but it is viscous and slightly sticky with a mostly dry finish. The alcohol is present, but more in fumes at the end of the drink rather than in the taste.

Really enjoyable beer, as much for the trying to figure it out as for the taste. Glad to have had a chance to try it.

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Photo of ediaz
4.35/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

750mL into a CCB Snifter

A: dark brown, 1 finger coffee colored head, seems dense

S: chocolate, malt, smoke, chamomile tea, honey, cocoa powder.. very inviting

T: Cocoa powder, marshmallow, chamomile tea. A honey taste comes through at the end. A smooth toasted gharam. Very tasty

M: body is medium and fitting. carb is low - helps bring out the flavors of the beer, not distract from.

O: very tasty. Didn't know what to expect but its enjoyable. A great desert beer. I'd have it again.

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Photo of Lucho
4.09/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into my Huna snifter

Appearance: Pours a dark brown with some transparency around the edges with a nice creamy light mocha thick head of one finger.

Smell: Coffee, then sweet mild oak and coconut. really yummy as it warms up.

Taste: is right up front with coconut infused honey, sweet and milky. This ends perfectly with a hint off coffee to balance out your palate. I am not a coffee beer fan but this fits perfectly with balanced milky honey coffee. like something you would get at coffee bean and tea leaf. Awesome!

Mouthfeel: medium to heavy bodied with depth of contrasting flavors. leaves you wanting more.

Overall: this is a really good beer that drinks well fresh out of the bottle. interested to see where it will go from here in 6 months.

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Photo of srhoadsy
3.66/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Served chilled into a tulip.

Pours an extremely dark sable color almost to the point of being black, much darker than I was expecting. Half inch of light brown head that slowly recedes with moderate surface layer and lacing.

Aromas of a musty, fruity sweetness with a hint of smoke and alcohol.

Flavor is again that musty sweetness from the mead, hint of smoke and it took me a while to place the fruit flavor, but to me it had a strong flavor of honeydew melon.

Medium bodied with a sweet, somewhat cloying finish. Moderate carbonation and aftertaste.

Overall an interesting brew, but not something I would search out again.

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Photo of drowland
2.69/5  rDev -29.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

2/11/13. 750mL bottle - thanks, Jackson! How does this not have more ratings being bottled and all already? Deep brown pour, some ambers/reds under the light, mostly on the edges, under a nice, thick tan head that cuts to a murky ring but coats the glass almost completely in lace. Lightly sweet aroma that I suppose hints at marshmallow and chocolate (with honey) vaguely, but there’s a certain almost floral bitterness to the aroma that when combined with the light smokey tea definitely makes it smell like soap/shampoo/potpourri. The flavor, sadly, is much the same. There’s a definite sweetness with some chocolate, marshmallow, and honey, as well as malty beer aspects, but there is a lingering bit of a bitter potpourri aspect. I can’t place it 100%, but it definitely reminds me of soap/shampoo/candles in an overwhelming manner. The lingering mild oakiness isn’t helping the case and there’s also a touch of metal/peppers. I was ready to love this. I’m sad. :(

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Ghost Stories from Cigar City Brewing
85 out of 100 based on 26 ratings.